October 9, 2014

1/23/2023 Update: This is the blend I’ve been using for the last few years! Lipton Orange Pekoe. It’s delicious!

3/17/2020 Update: Make sure the tea is “Orange Pekoe.” The original link seems to point to a normal black tea now– not sure how that will turn out. I’ve updated the link, hope it sends you to Orange Pekoe tea! Also, this blend ($$$!) and this blend also look good, thought I have not tried them. This content may use referral links. Read my disclosure policy for more info.

Yummy HK Style Milk TeaI LOVE MILK TEA! 🙂

I love cold Taiwan style milk tea AND hot Hong Kong style milk tea. As long as there is a strong tea flavor and it’s not too sweet, I love it. A few months ago, I found a Taiwan style milk tea recipe I love, but had yet to nail the HK-style one.

It’s not for lack of trying. I have tried a number of “silk-stocking” milk teas using condensed milk, evaporated milk, Lipton tea, Ceylon teas, and other blends of teas, based on various recipes I found online. None were to my satisfaction. My biggest problem was that I couldn’t hit the right tea flavor, so I gave up. Various people had told me the secret was to use Lipton tea, but um… there are several varieties of Lipton tea, so without a specific TYPE of tea, I was still pretty lost.

Fast forward a couple years. Enter Auntie Catherine, a very, very thoughtful lady at my church, who delivered a box of MAGIC to me. Magic = a special box of Lipton’s Yellow Label Orange Pekoe Tea, which she described as, “very smooth and rich. The best so far I have tasted. Hope you like it.” She is quite the foodie, so I knew this was gonna be good. Without knowing exactly what to do with it, I had planned to make a big batch of Taiwan-style milk tea with it, but when I opened it, I was greeted with a familiar rich aroma. I couldn’t quite place it.

“Ben, this smells familiar,” I said, holding the box of tea up to his face. “Smell it.”

He sniffed. He paused. Then his face lit up.

“It’s that milk tea you like but haven’t been able to make!” he said, excitedly.

Uh, WHAT tea? I thought to myself. He must’ve forgotten I’ve already nailed my milk tea recipe. Mmmmm-hm. I thought smugly, thinking only of the Taiwan milk tea.

“You know, the silk-stocking one! From Hong Kong!” he continued, seeing the question marks on my face.

“…OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH YEAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH THAT’S WHAT IT IS!!!” I cried, finally placing the strong aroma. It brought me right back to those Hong Kong cafe breakfasts I craved so often.

What a husband :). He knows me so well. And he was right. This was THE SECRET INGREDIENT I HAD BEEN SEARCHING FOR! MY QUEST WAS OVER. Victory was nigh.

HK Style Milk Tea-- easy and satisfying!

So I brewed some tea, added some sugar and evaporated milk, and guess what? I WON!! WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER!!!!! It was just like the cafes, and now I can make it wheneverrrr I want!!!! This is going to be so bad for my health, but oh SO SATISFYING! And now, dear readers and Internet friends, I share it with you. If you’ve never tried this before, I hope you find that it’s your cup ‘o tea! Pun totally intended.

Hong Kong Style Milk Tea! Easy and delicious!


Hong Kong Style Milk Tea
Makes 1 small cup



  1. Bring water to a boil, or microwave in a mug til steaming, about 1-2 minutes.
  2. Steep 2 tea bags for 5 minutes, or until tea is dark like coffee. Remove tea bags, squeezing the liquid out before discarding.
  3. While tea is still hot, stir in sugar until dissolved.
  4. Stir in evaporated milk, starting with 2 tablespoons. If you like it creamier, add an additional tablespoon at a time until it suits your liking. If you’d like it sweeter, add one additional teaspoon of sugar at a time until it suits your liking.

Serve with toast with some condensed milk drizzled on top and you’ve got yourself a lovely HK-style breakfast!



Taiwan Milk Tea Recipe

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24 responses to “Hong Kong Milk Tea Recipe”

  1. Michelle says:

    Any tips for turning this into an iced milk tea recipe?

    • joellen says:

      Shake it up with some ice! 🙂 If it’s too watery that way, then chill it first and then shake it with some ice if you still want it to be “iced.” Or double the recipe with an extra tea bag (to make the tea flavor more pronounced since extra ice will water it down), then proceed to shake the hot drink with some ice. Never tried any of them, but I imagine these are the first few things I’d try!

  2. Linda says:

    THANK YOU SO MUCH for this recipe. I love HK-style milk tea and I always look forward to going to Philly or NYC for it. Now I can make it in the comfort of my home (uh-oh, lol). Thanks again!

    • joellen says:

      Haha you’re welcome! Being a total milk tea lover, I can totally imagine your excitement if you don’t have easy access where you live… ENJOY!! 😀

  3. vm says:

    Thanks mate – like this HK style hot milk tea : )

  4. Stacey says:

    So happy to have found this recipe!! Can i use honey to sweeten instead of sugar? I had honey milk tea when i went to NYC.. it was amazinggg! Also does it have to be evaporated milk? Could i use something else?

    • joellen says:

      Hi Stacey, for authentic HK milk tea, I’d stick with sugar and evaporated milk (or maybe a little bit of condensed milk). If you’re looking for a Taiwan style milk tea, try this recipe: https://cuppacocoa.com/taiwan-milk-tea-recipe/

      Feel free to play around with subbing in honey, and I think using whole milk would work as well instead of creamer. If you do try honey, I’d try warming it in the microwave first and mixing it into the hot tea first before adding the cold ingredients and shaking it up. That should help it blend in better instead of being clumpy. Good luck!

  5. Chris says:

    Been looking for this recipe for long time, had the hk milktea from a yellow-themed resto in Mongkok. I would like to ask what brand of evaporated milk are you using? Is it the same red and white milk in hk?

    Thanks in advance!

    • joellen says:

      Hi Chris, I’m not too picky about my brand of evaporated milk- usually Carnation, I think. I’m not sure if it’s the same one used widely in HK, sorry! Hope you enjoy the recipe!